Dr. Robert Cutchen Albuquerque & Santa Fe

Meet Dr. Robert Cutchen

In 2009, Dr. Cutchen founded Albuquerque Vein & Laser Institute, a clinic dedicated solely to the diagnosis and treatment of venous disease. His goal was to provide the most advanced diagnostic and treatment options all in the comfort of his office without the need for hospitalization. Our goal is to treat every patient the way we ourselves would hope to be treated.

Read Dr. Cutchen’s full bio here

Vein Treatments Albuquerque & Santa Fe

Vein Treatments

We provide our patients with the most advanced and comprehensive vein treatments. See the difference between before and after.

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Aesthetic Treatments Albuquerque & Santa Fe

Aesthetic Treatments

We utilize the power of advanced laser technology to treat a multitude of cosmetic concerns. See what a difference our treatments can make.

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Patient Resources Albuquerque & Santa FeDo you have a question?

Discover our FAQ pages to find your answers. If you still have a question, please call us at (505) 848-8346 and we will be happy to assist you.

What's the Difference Between Spider Veins and Varicose Veins?

If you have visible veins, your first thought might be how to get rid of them. To understand how your team at Albuquerque Vein & Laser Institute treats these problem veins, you should understand a bit about the differences between varicose veins and spider veins. They often have different underlying causes that may or may not require treatment.  

What are Varicose Veins and Spider Veins?

Both varicose and spider veins usually appear red, blue, purple, or even green, depending on your skin tone. These are damaged veins that have become stretched, allowing the pigments inside them to become visible through the skin. Unlike spider veins, varicose veins can be a sign of a deeper condition called venous insufficiency that requires treatment to ensure healthy blood flow.

If you have visible veins, your first thought might be how to get rid of them. To understand how your team at Albuquerque Vein & Laser Institute treats these problem veins, you should understand a bit about the differences between varicose veins and spider veins. They often have different underlying causes that may or may not require treatment.  

What are Varicose Veins and Spider Veins?

Both varicose and spider veins usually appear red, blue, purple, or even green, depending on your skin tone. These are damaged veins that have become stretched, allowing the pigments inside them to become visible through the skin. Unlike spider veins, varicose veins can be a sign of a deeper condition called venous insufficiency that requires treatment to ensure healthy blood flow.

Spider Veins, Varicose Veins Albuquerque

*Individual results may vary.

Spider Veins, Varicose Veins Albuquerque

*Individual results may vary.

What’s the Difference Between Spider Veins and Varicose Veins?

While spider veins and varicose veins have some similarities, they can be very different in where they appear, what causes them, and how they are treated. 

Appearance

Spider veins are usually less than 1mm wide, and they can occur almost anywhere, but most often on your legs and arms. They typically look branched or web-like and can be flat or slightly raised. They can occur as part of a condition like rosacea.  

Varicose veins are usually larger than 3mm wide, and they occur on the legs. They are often described as “rope-like” and may have a raised, bulging appearance. These veins can become quite large and visible, and they may have symptoms. 

Causes

Some factors contribute to the development of both types of veins. Sitting or standing for long periods, hormonal changes, and family history are significant factors. 

Spider veins have a wide range of causes. Some medical conditions can cause them, as can a history of excessive sun exposure, smoking, or trauma to the skin in the affected area. Current or former smokers are at elevated risk. People with rosacea and other skin conditions may experience these small, damaged veins. 

What’s the Difference Between Spider Veins and Varicose Veins?

While spider veins and varicose veins have some similarities, they can be very different in where they appear, what causes them, and how they are treated. 

Appearance

Spider veins are usually less than 1mm wide, and they can occur almost anywhere, but most often on your legs and arms. They typically look branched or web-like and can be flat or slightly raised. They can occur as part of a condition like rosacea.  

Varicose veins are usually larger than 3mm wide, and they occur on the legs. They are often described as “rope-like” and may have a raised, bulging appearance. These veins can become quite large and visible, and they may have symptoms. 

Causes

Some factors contribute to the development of both types of veins. Sitting or standing for long periods, hormonal changes, and family history are significant factors. 

Spider veins have a wide range of causes. Some medical conditions can cause them, as can a history of excessive sun exposure, smoking, or trauma to the skin in the affected area. Current or former smokers are at elevated risk. People with rosacea and other skin conditions may experience these small, damaged veins. 

Request a Consultation

Simply fill out the form on this page, and one of our highly trained staff members at Albuquerque Vein & Laser Institute will reach out to your promptly to schedule your appointment.

Request a Consultation

Simply fill out the form on this page, and one of our highly trained staff members at Albuquerque Vein & Laser Institute will reach out to your promptly to schedule your appointment.

Varicose veins often develop as a result of venous insufficiency, a sign that the deep veins in your legs have become damaged, allowing blood to pool and causing backflow. If you have this condition, you may experience uncomfortable symptoms. Factors that contribute to this condition include obesity, aging, and the amount of physical activity. 

Symptoms

Spider veins generally have no symptoms and are a cosmetic concern. However, varicose veins can have symptoms, including swelling, aching, a feeling of heaviness, and itching or burning sensations. Some people with advanced venous insufficiency may experience sores around their lower legs and ankles that do not heal normally. 

Treatment

Many people with problem veins will benefit from a combination of treatment methods to achieve their desired results. Varicose veins are often treated with endovenous laser treatment that closes the damaged deep veins, followed by other treatments, such as ambulatory phlebectomy or endovenous chemical ablation, as needed. Spider veins are most thoroughly treated with sclerotherapy, an injectable solution that stops blood flow through the problem veins. 

Varicose veins often develop as a result of venous insufficiency, a sign that the deep veins in your legs have become damaged, allowing blood to pool and causing backflow. If you have this condition, you may experience uncomfortable symptoms. Factors that contribute to this condition include obesity, aging, and the amount of physical activity. 

Symptoms

Spider veins generally have no symptoms and are a cosmetic concern. However, varicose veins can have symptoms, including swelling, aching, a feeling of heaviness, and itching or burning sensations. Some people with advanced venous insufficiency may experience sores around their lower legs and ankles that do not heal normally. 

Treatment

Many people with problem veins will benefit from a combination of treatment methods to achieve their desired results. Varicose veins are often treated with endovenous laser treatment that closes the damaged deep veins, followed by other treatments, such as ambulatory phlebectomy or endovenous chemical ablation, as needed. Spider veins are most thoroughly treated with sclerotherapy, an injectable solution that stops blood flow through the problem veins. 

I am very grateful…Dr. Cutchens and staff were so professional and kind. The procedure they performed has given me, my quality of life back.
JoVella B.
I am very grateful…Dr. Cutchens and staff were so professional and kind. The procedure they performed has given me, my quality of life back.
-JoVella B.

Take the Next Step

If you want to learn more about the difference between spider veins and varicose veins, contact us at Albuquerque Vein & Laser Institute at 505-848-8346, or complete the form on this page, and one of our staff members will reach out to you promptly. 

Albuquerque Vein & Laser Institute is located in the Journal Center area of Albuquerque and proudly serves vein patients throughout the entire Albuquerque area, as well as Rio Rancho, Santa Fe, Santa Rosa, Los Lunas, and other areas throughout New Mexico.

** This blog provides general information and discussion about medicine, health, and related subjects. The words and other content provided in this blog, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately licensed physician

** This blog provides general information and discussion about medicine, health, and related subjects. The words and other content provided in this blog, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately licensed physician.

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